Man Wearing "Explosives Belt" Hijacks EgyptAir With 81 Passengers Onboard

The plane was going from Alexandria to Cairo and has been forced to land in Cyprus.

Cover image via BrunchNews

EgyptAir hijacker's real identity and motive revealed

An Egyptian presidential spokesman said the correct name of the EgyptAir Flight 181 hijacker is Seif El Din Mustafa, an Egyptian national.

Cypriot media said he has demanded that he speak with a Cypriot woman to whom he claims he was once married. She is now being brought to the airport to participate in the negotiations.

Addressing reporters with the visiting European parliament president, Martin Schulz, the Cypriot leader, Nikos Anastasiades, ruled out terrorism, confirming instead that it had been instigated a man bent on reuniting with his former wife.

It’s all to do with a woman,” said the Cypriot president. “We are doing everything to release the hostages.”

Passengers freed from the EgyptAir plane.

Image via George Michael/AFP/Getty Images


An EgyptAir airliner, Flight MS181, carrying 81 passengers, has been hijacked and forced to divert to Larnaca airport on the south coast of Cyprus. Going from Alexandria to Cairo, the Airbus A320 was hijacked after a passenger said he was wearing an explosives belt.

Image via Reuters

Negotiations with the hijacker have resulted in the release of all passengers, except for 7 crew and 4 foreigners, EgyptAir said

Released passengers leaving the plane.

Image via Twitter/B3zero

The Egyptian civil aviation ministry said in a statement:

"The pilot said that a passenger told him he had an explosives vest and forced the plane to land in Larnaca."

According to CNN, the hijacking comes months after a Russian Metrojet passenger plane was downed over Egypt's Sinai desert

While Russian authorities insisted the plane crash was the result of terrorism, one U.S. official said it was "99.9% certain" the cause. Another said it was "likely."

Egypt was insisting that airports were safe, and that tourists should come back. But this is going to raise a lot of questions about just how safe the country, and its air travel is, CNN's Ian Lee says.

This is developing story. Please come back for updates.

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